Mars probe captures groundbreaking images of the planet’s discrete aurora

It isn’t only the USA and China that are exploring Mars. The UAE has captured new images of the red planet’s discrete aurora, which could deepen our understanding of the interactions between solar radiation, Mars’ magnetic fields, and the planetary atmosphere.

Up front:  The images were taken by the Mars Hope Probe’s EMUS (Emirates Mars Ultraviolet Spectrometer) instrument, and show a ghostly glow known as the discrete aurora.

The pictures fully characterize the discrete aurora phenomenon in Mars’ atmosphere for the first time in history. Scientists believe they could challenge the notion that large scale solar events are needed to drive Mars auroral events

The implications for our understanding of Mars’ atmospheric and magnetospheric science are tremendous and provide new support to the theory that solar storms are not necessary to drive Mars‘ aurora,” said Hessa Al Matroushi, the Emirates Mars Mission’s science lead.

Credit: Emirates Mars Mission